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Little Village press release
For immediate release 25 November 2021
Press contact: Little Village Communications Manager, Emma Gibbs, 07593 135790
Brent’s first ever baby bank set to open
Baby bank charity, Little Village, is set to open its fifth branch in Wembley Central on 6 December at UNCLE Wembley, 7 Park Lane, HA9 7RH. It will be the first baby bank in the borough of Brent.
The space has been donated by UNCLE Wembley, who have granted Little Village a ten-year lease.
The new Brent branch will join Little Village’s other sites in Battersea, Southwark, Camden and Roehampton.
Little Village is a baby bank, providing clothes, toys and equipment for babies and children up to the age of five. The charity has supported over 5000 children so far this year and has seen a huge increase in the number of families needing its help since the pandemic hit in March 2020. In recent weeks it has also provided over 800 bundles of essential items to Afghan refugees who were staying in London hotels.
Little Village hopes to help around 40 families from the borough of Brent each week, by providing essentials for babies and young children. Families are referred to the charity via professionals like midwives, health visitors and social workers. The charity has over 480 volunteers across its sites and hopes to attract a new team of volunteers to help run its hub in Brent.
Little Village’s CEO, Sophie Livingstone MBE, said:
“We are really pleased to be able to help families in Brent, but the sad truth is that child poverty rates in the borough are really high and that’s why services like ours are needed.
“Little Village helps families by providing the essentials needed by their young children, including clothing, nappies, beds, buggies and toiletries. We are able to address families’ immediate needs but would love to live in a world where organisations like ours weren’t needed. Whilst there is a need, we will do all we can to help.
“We are reliant on the kindness of local people to donate pre-loved baby gear and volunteer to help us run our sites. Please pop in if you’d like to help or visit our website for more information.”
Zahra Merali, Community Engagement Coordinator at Little Village Brent, said:
“I was born and brought up in Brent so I’m excited about being able to help local families who are going through tough times.
“Poverty carries such a stigma, which can be so damaging to families with young children. I hope through our work we can help to remove that stigma.
“I’d like people to realise that anyone can fall upon hard times, regardless of background. If we can help to alleviate any of the stress and anxiety for families living on low incomes, we will.”
Ryan Prince, CEO and Founder of UNCLE said:
“Having Little Village in our UNCLE Wembley neighbourhood benefits both Little Village and our residents. We fully support Little Village’s mission to make it as easy as possible for families to help each other to thrive, which is in line with UNCLE’s mission to be “renting, as it should be.”
“As UNCLE continues to scale in the UK, we are pleased to have the opportunity to share our spaces and support such a wonderful charity.”
Thanks to the kindness of several volunteers, including staff from Selfridges, the Brent hub has been fitted out to create a ‘shop’ feel so that families visiting Little Village are able to choose clothes, toys and books for their children with dignity.
Notes to editors
About Little Village
Are you a family needing help from Little Village? Please ask a professional to fill out a referral form on the Little Village website.
Want to volunteer? Please fill out a form on the Little Village website.
Have items to donate? Please check that they’re on the list of items needed this month by checking the website.
About UNCLE: “renting, as it should be”
Frustrated by the lack of decent living accommodation in the UK, Ryan Prince established the UNCLE brand in 2017, offering design-savvy apartments combined with a straight-talking, no-nonsense approach for renters who are tired of being treated like second-class citizens. In just over five years since its launch, UNCLE now has 6 buildings across London and Manchester, with 4 more announced, operating at 98% occupancy and net promoter score of over 90%.
Lots of people and organisations volunteered their time, expertise and materials to help Little Village to set up its new site, you can read more here.